BUSSTEPP 2008 at DAMTP
BUSSTEPP (British Universities Summer School in Theoretical Elementary Particle Physics) is an annual event supported by STFC. The school has been going strong since 1970, with UK universities taking it in turn to act as hosts. Each year it brings together a new generation of early-stage PhD students in theoretical particle physics from all around the country, and beyond. They hear world authorities lecture on a broad range of current research, as well as having the opportunity to interact with one another and give short presentations about their own projects. The school also involves post-doctoral researchers in a key way, by recruiting them to take on the demanding task of giving daily tutorials on problems set for each of the lecture courses.
2008 marked the first return of BUSSTEPP to DAMTP since the department's move to the CMS site. The BUSSTEP 2008 Director was Dr Jonathan Evans and he was assisted by several other DAMTP members. This is a particularly exciting time in the field, with the long-awaited Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN poised to give new insights into the nature of matter and the forces which bind it together. The 66 students and 8 tutors who attended the school (from 25th August to 5th September) learnt much about possible new physics at the LHC, but also had lectures relating to string theory, cosmology and lattice gauge theory, as well as an inspirational lecture from Stephen Hawking on his own unique approach to physics.
Judging from the student feedback, the school was a great success: a demanding but exhilarating and very rewarding two weeks. The lecture material and prepared notes will no doubt attract an even wider readership via the school web site www.damtp.cam.ac.uk/busstepp2008